Friday, March 16, 2018

Cymru, March 2018 II - Accomplishment: Abergavenny, Blaenavon, and Llanfoist

There was time for a nap this afternoon as I felt so much contentment from having achieved my main purpose. It wasn't just visiting the replacement headstone we had put up, but I cleaned it and planted daffodils too.

There remains one more thing on my to-do list in Llanfoist. We'll see if tomorrow works out. It may just be perfect! Otherwise, I would stay in bed. (Check the weather forecast.)

At four o'clock, GMT, I seemed awake enough to call my wife at home. I then went back to bed and slept two more hours arising with the dawn and discovering the key to the back garden in this little place I'm staying for the first weekend. Out in the garden (backyard), I found the postcard pic for the Blorenge, the mountain that begins the Welsh Industrial Valleys to the West.

So I had to go for a walk.

My razor broke so I was planning to get to Tesco which opens early. But I detoured and never even got there having found the Pound Store instead (slightly higher priced than the Dollar Store because it's Pounds.)

First I had to go back to the Vaughan House in the light for pics.

I'm pretty sure the "Cow Inn" added the cow heads after the Vaughans moved out. And it was clear as day to see that it was the Vaughans. Our little friends with the snakes around their necks helped out.

Yep, that's our guys. Somebody took some artistic license and painted one as an old man. Maybe I'll take him for my personal armorial.

I am in love with Abergavenny!

City Market and note The King's Head Public House with Charles I (get it?)
High Street becomes Frogmore Street up higher.
But first, a trip by St. Mary's Priory, then the Castle, and on down to the Castle Meadow.

Yes, it is Spring in Wales! (At least until tomorrow morning.) I haven't been inside to see Grandma Gwladys verch Dafydd Gam, Y Seren o Fenni, yet this trip.

And here's the tithe barn dating back to the 13th Century.

And Abergavenny Castle!

I found a lonely clump of Daffodils out on the meadow. It rained last night. Hard.
The Usk is heavy with run-off - snowmelt and rain. And the eternal Blorenge, of course.
Frogmore Street is where the Dayer Family lived that housed Elder John Needham on his missionary visits to Abergavenny.
The Dayers did not go to Utah, William and Margaret having died by 1849.
Their daughter married some swell and moved to London.
Frogmore Baptist is at the end of Frogmore Street.
But it is not the original chapel attended by the Dayers before converting to Mormonism.
The former chapel was on the corner to the right where Tesco now sells food and miscellanea.
Having procured a cheap razor, I prepared myself to visit Blaenavon. I met in the World Heritage Center with the volunteer Genealogists. I had a good conversation with a kind man. He gave me a few tips, especially about visiting the Gwent Records Office. And I showed him a few things. He was very impressed with our replacement headstone.

Then I walked the town a bit.

Blaenavon is a sad, industrial town. The coal pits are closed and the iron furnaces out. They do have pride. And Hope.

It was great to see the World Heritage Site pretty much all to myself.

There was a chance to visit with the docents for a bit. They told me to go into the newly revised multi-media exhibit and push the button.

Would you push this button? I figured I didn't have much to lose. So, what the Heck?

It was a great show, especially the Uffern part. My grand-dads way back were puddlers just over the hill at Garn Dyrys.

I then sat in the 1840s home recreation for a while trying to soak up the atmosphere.

Then it was back over the mountain and to the Abergavenny Garden Center to buy the daffodils for Granddad John (1789).

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